Promoting independent complaint resolution

Board

Chair - Anthony Arter

Anthony ArterAnthony Arter is the Pensions Ombudsman and Pension Protection Fund Ombudsman. He was appointed on 25 May 2015.

Anthony graduated from Jesus College Cambridge, in 1988, where he read Law.

He is a solicitor who has specialised in pensions since 1996. He was Eversheds LLP’s Head of Pensions from 2005 until 2013 and their London Senior Partner 2009 until 2014.

Until 2015 Anthony was an independent member of the Pensions Management Institute Committee overseeing their Accredited Adviser Programme.

He has also been an independent trustee for many years.

Anthony has been involved in corporate responsibility activities since 2002, and each year led ‘Give and Gain Day’, an employee volunteering day, which in 2013 attracted 12000+ volunteers from 300 companies.

From 2009 until 2012, Anthony was a member of the Business in the Community London Advisory Board.

In 2009 he was appointed as HRH Prince Charles’ BITC London Ambassador for Volunteering.

Vice-Chair - Rob Behrens

Rob BehrensRob Behrens CBE is the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman in the UK. Rob holds non-executive positions at UCAS (the Universities and Colleges Admission Service) and the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman. He is Chair of ENOHE, the European Network of Ombudsmen in Higher Education, and a Visiting Professor at University College London.

Rob was Independent Adjudicator and Chief Executive of OIAHE, the ombudsman service for higher education students in England and Wales, for two terms between 2008 and 2016. Previously, Rob worked in higher education and then had a career in the UK civil service.

During his time with the civil service, Rob served for three years as Secretary to the Committee on Standards in Public Life, the body giving independent advice on standards to the Prime Minister. He also worked in international development, including notable work on the South African transformation from apartheid - a role for which he was thanked personally by Nelson Mandela. Rob was also Complaints Commissioner to the Bar Standards Board of England and Wales between 2006 and 2008.

Representing Ombudsman members

Rosemary Agnew

Details to follow.

Kieran FitzGerald

Kieran FitzGerald Kieran has been a Commissioner in the three-person Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission since 2011. Prior to becoming Commissioner, he managed communications for the founding Commission from 2006. He has extensive experience in communications, having run a private agency for six years and also having spent much of his career in journalism. In his time in journalism, he was Chairman of the Broadcasting branch of the National Union of Journalists. His work as a journalist took him to the USA, Africa and Russia, as well as considerable periods in Northern Ireland. He was awarded News and Current Affairs Journalist of the Year in 1999.

Kieran holds a Masters Degree in Economics and a Doctorate in Governance from the Law School of Queen’s University Belfast, where he specialised in the evaluation of performance of Ombudsman schemes.

Douglas Melville

Doug MelvilleDouglas Melville is the inaugural Principal Ombudsman and Chief Executive of the Channel Islands Financial Ombudsman (CIFO) which resolves disputes arising from the provision of retail financial services in and from the international financial centres in the Channel Islands. Mr Melville recently completed four years as the elected Chair of the International Network of Financial Services Ombudsman Schemes (INFO Network). He advises internationally on financial consumer protection, financial inclusion, and dispute resolution for various governments and international bodies including the World Bank and the OECD. From 2009 until 2015, he served as the Ombudsman and Chief Executive Officer of the Canadian Ombudsman for Banking Services and Investments. In 1996, Mr Melville designed and established the office of the Canadian Banking Ombudsman and served as its first Board Secretary. Following his undergraduate studies in biochemistry, economic geography and political science, Mr Melville completed a law degree, an MBA and a master’s in competition and international trade law.

Mr Melville qualified as a barrister and solicitor in Canada in 1993 becoming a professional mediator and arbitrator. He became an Ombudsman in 2006. Before that, he held senior management and legal/regulatory roles in the banking, investment and insurance sectors. He holds the ICD.D designation from the Institute of Corporate Directors and has served on a wide range of boards and advisory bodies in the for-profit and not-for-profit sectors including the Forum of Canadian Ombudsman (FCO).

Mr Melville came to Jersey from Canada in 2015 to take up his current appointment with his family. They are all active in the community and he currently serves as a States of Jersey-appointed Commissioner with Jersey Overseas Aid.

Felicity Mitchell

Felicity MitchellFelicity Mitchell is the Independent Adjudicator for Higher Education. Felicity joined the Office of the Independent Adjudicator (OIA) in 2004 and worked as a consultant before its designation as the student complaints scheme in 2005. She became Deputy Adjudicator in 2009 and Independent Adjudicator in 2018. The OIA looks at complaints from students about higher education providers in England and Wales.

As Independent Adjudicator, Felicity has overall responsibility for the OIA’s good practice and case-handling work, and for legal claims against the OIA including judicial review.

Felicity studied English at university before qualifying as a barrister. She was called to the Bar in 1992 and, after some years in private practice, moved to the ombuds sector, working at the Banking Ombudsman and the Financial Ombudsman Service.

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Nicola Williams

Nicola WilliamsNicola Williams took up the post of Service Complaints Commissioner to the Armed Forces in January 2015 and the post subsequently transitioned to that of Service Complaints Ombudsman on 1 January 2016.

Nicola previously held the post of the Complaints Commissioner for the Cayman Islands from 2009 to 2015, with a remit that extended over 93 government entities.

Since 2009, Nicola has also been a Crown Court Recorder sitting on the London and South Eastern Circuit.

Between 2004 and 2009, she was a Commissioner at the Independent Police Complaints Commission, with particular responsibility for Kent, Sussex, the Ministry of Defence Police and part of the Metropolitan Police. Prior to this, she was a board member at the Police Complaints Authority from 2001 to 2004.

Between 1985 and 2001, Nicola was a barrister in private practice, practicing in a number of fields before the High Court, Crown Court and Court of Appeal, and specialising in Criminal Law, including three successful Commonwealth death penalty appeals before the House of Lords sitting as the Privy Council.

Nicola is a founder member of the Independent Advisory Group to the Metropolitan Police Service (following recommendations arising from the Stephen Lawrence Report in 1999).

In addition to being actively engaged as a mentor for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds, Nicola is also a published author.

Matthew Vickers

Matthew VickersMatthew Vickers joined Ombudsman Services, which operates the Energy Ombudsman scheme, in 2015 and became chief executive in late 2018.

His leadership role involves developing and implementing long-term strategy and maintaining positive relationships with regulators, government departments, politicians, consumer advocacy groups and other key external stakeholders. He is passionate about the role of an ombudsman in delivering better outcomes for consumers and businesses alike.

Prior to joining Ombudsman Services in 2015, Matthew was chief executive at the Scottish Legal Complaints Commission (SLCC), a non-departmental public body based in Edinburgh. A fluent Spanish speaker, he spent four years with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office as British Consul, initially in the Canary Islands and then in Madrid. Before entering public service, Matthew’s background was in retail and FMCG. Matthew lives in Wirral, Merseyside. Outside work he enjoys spending time with his wife and two children.

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Representing Complaint Handler and Associate Members

Helen Megarry

Helen MegarryHelen was appointed as the Independent Adjudicator from April 2016. She adjudicates on complaints made about HM Revenue and Customs, and the Valuation Office Agency. A solicitor by profession, Helen has a wealth of experience in the ombudsman role having spent 18 years with the Housing Ombudsman Service, most recently as Deputy Housing Ombudsman.

Rónán Ó Domhnaill

Rónán Ó DomhnaillRónán Ó Domhnaill was appointed Language Commissioner on 12 March 2014. He was appointed by the President of Ireland following his nomination by the Government. Both Houses of the Oireachtas, (Dáil Éireann and Seanad Éireann) unanimously accepted that nomination.
Rónán spent 16 years as a journalist with the national broadcaster in Ireland, RTÉ and with TG4. He was appointed as Political Correspondent with Nuacht RTÉ/TG4 in 2006. He also, on occasion, presented political programmes such as The Week in Politics.

The Language Commissioner reports directly to the Houses of the Oireachtas. Rónán is often before Oireachtas committees to speak about language rights and the need to protect and strengthen those rights. 
The Office of An Coimisinéara Teanga is an independent statutory office whose responsibility is to monitor the manner in which the State’s public bodies comply with the provisions of the Official Languages Act 2003.
The Office investigates complaints from the public in cases where it is believed that public bodies may have failed to fulfil their obligations under the Official Languages Act. The Office also enquires into any valid complaints regarding allegations that a provision of any other enactment relating to the status or use of Irish has been contravened.

The Office also provides advice to the public about their language rights and to public bodies about their language obligations under the Act.

Antony Townsend

Antony TownsendAntony was has been the UK Financial Regulators Complaints Commissioner since 1 May 2014, considering complaints against the Financial Conduct Authority and the Bank of England. He is Chair of the UK and Ireland Regulatory Board of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, Chair of the Regulatory Board of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants, a member of the Board of the Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care, and a Trustee of South Warwickshire Citizens Advice.

Antony was the first Chief Executive of the Solicitors Regulation Authority from its establishment in 2006 until January 2014. In that role, he led major reforms in the regulation of solicitors and law firms, including the introduction of a risk-based approach to regulation, and greater competition in the legal services market. He was the General Dental Council’s chief executive from 2001-2006, where he led a large reform programme to modernise dental regulation, involving legislative, structural and operational change, and including the extension of regulation to new groups of dental professionals. In the 1990s, Antony held a number of senior roles at the General Medical Council, including Director of Standards and Education, and Head of Conduct.

His earlier career was with the Home Office, where he worked primarily on criminal justice issues.

Director - Donal Galligan

Donal GalliganDonal was appointed Director of the Ombudsman Association in February 2016, after joining the Association on an interim basis in June 2014. Donal has extensive experience of external relations having worked in various Private Office and policy roles in the UK. He helped set up the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority whilst at the UK Department of Trade and Industry and ran the Board Secretariat at the South East England Development Agency. In 2008 he joined the UK Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO), where he spent 5 years. At PHSO he set up and headed the Policy Team, where he led on international relations, influenced government policy and secured legislative changes.

Donal also sits on the steering group of the UK Administrative Justice Council and is a member of the British Standards Institute’s Consumer and Public Interest Strategic Advisory Committee.

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Chair - Anthony Arter

Anthony ArterAnthony Arter is the Pensions Ombudsman and Pension Protection Fund Ombudsman. He was appointed on 25 May 2015.

Anthony graduated from Jesus College Cambridge, in 1988, where he read Law.

He is a solicitor who has specialised in pensions since 1996. He was Eversheds LLP’s Head of Pensions from 2005 until 2013 and their London Senior Partner 2009 until 2014.

Until 2015 Anthony was an independent member of the Pensions Management Institute Committee overseeing their Accredited Adviser Programme.

He has also been an independent trustee for many years.

Anthony has been involved in corporate responsibility activities since 2002, and each year led ‘Give and Gain Day’, an employee volunteering day, which in 2013 attracted 12000+ volunteers from 300 companies.

From 2009 until 2012, Anthony was a member of the Business in the Community London Advisory Board.

In 2009 he was appointed as HRH Prince Charles’ BITC London Ambassador for Volunteering.

Vice-Chair - Rob Behrens

Rob BehrensRob Behrens CBE is the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman in the UK. Rob holds non-executive positions at UCAS (the Universities and Colleges Admission Service) and the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman. He is Chair of ENOHE, the European Network of Ombudsmen in Higher Education, and a Visiting Professor at University College London.

Rob was Independent Adjudicator and Chief Executive of OIAHE, the ombudsman service for higher education students in England and Wales, for two terms between 2008 and 2016. Previously, Rob worked in higher education and then had a career in the UK civil service.

During his time with the civil service, Rob served for three years as Secretary to the Committee on Standards in Public Life, the body giving independent advice on standards to the Prime Minister. He also worked in international development, including notable work on the South African transformation from apartheid - a role for which he was thanked personally by Nelson Mandela. Rob was also Complaints Commissioner to the Bar Standards Board of England and Wales between 2006 and 2008.

Representing Ombudsman members

Rosemary Agnew

Details to follow.

Kieran FitzGerald

Kieran FitzGerald Kieran has been a Commissioner in the three-person Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission since 2011. Prior to becoming Commissioner, he managed communications for the founding Commission from 2006. He has extensive experience in communications, having run a private agency for six years and also having spent much of his career in journalism. In his time in journalism, he was Chairman of the Broadcasting branch of the National Union of Journalists. His work as a journalist took him to the USA, Africa and Russia, as well as considerable periods in Northern Ireland. He was awarded News and Current Affairs Journalist of the Year in 1999.

Kieran holds a Masters Degree in Economics and a Doctorate in Governance from the Law School of Queen’s University Belfast, where he specialised in the evaluation of performance of Ombudsman schemes.

Douglas Melville

Doug MelvilleDouglas Melville is the inaugural Principal Ombudsman and Chief Executive of the Channel Islands Financial Ombudsman (CIFO) which resolves disputes arising from the provision of retail financial services in and from the international financial centres in the Channel Islands. Mr Melville recently completed four years as the elected Chair of the International Network of Financial Services Ombudsman Schemes (INFO Network). He advises internationally on financial consumer protection, financial inclusion, and dispute resolution for various governments and international bodies including the World Bank and the OECD. From 2009 until 2015, he served as the Ombudsman and Chief Executive Officer of the Canadian Ombudsman for Banking Services and Investments. In 1996, Mr Melville designed and established the office of the Canadian Banking Ombudsman and served as its first Board Secretary. Following his undergraduate studies in biochemistry, economic geography and political science, Mr Melville completed a law degree, an MBA and a master’s in competition and international trade law.

Mr Melville qualified as a barrister and solicitor in Canada in 1993 becoming a professional mediator and arbitrator. He became an Ombudsman in 2006. Before that, he held senior management and legal/regulatory roles in the banking, investment and insurance sectors. He holds the ICD.D designation from the Institute of Corporate Directors and has served on a wide range of boards and advisory bodies in the for-profit and not-for-profit sectors including the Forum of Canadian Ombudsman (FCO).

Mr Melville came to Jersey from Canada in 2015 to take up his current appointment with his family. They are all active in the community and he currently serves as a States of Jersey-appointed Commissioner with Jersey Overseas Aid.

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Felicity Mitchell

Felicity MitchellFelicity Mitchell is the Independent Adjudicator for Higher Education. Felicity joined the Office of the Independent Adjudicator (OIA) in 2004 and worked as a consultant before its designation as the student complaints scheme in 2005. She became Deputy Adjudicator in 2009 and Independent Adjudicator in 2018. The OIA looks at complaints from students about higher education providers in England and Wales.

As Independent Adjudicator, Felicity has overall responsibility for the OIA’s good practice and case-handling work, and for legal claims against the OIA including judicial review.

Felicity studied English at university before qualifying as a barrister. She was called to the Bar in 1992 and, after some years in private practice, moved to the ombuds sector, working at the Banking Ombudsman and the Financial Ombudsman Service.

Nicola Williams

Nicola WilliamsNicola Williams took up the post of Service Complaints Commissioner to the Armed Forces in January 2015 and the post subsequently transitioned to that of Service Complaints Ombudsman on 1 January 2016.

Nicola previously held the post of the Complaints Commissioner for the Cayman Islands from 2009 to 2015, with a remit that extended over 93 government entities.

Since 2009, Nicola has also been a Crown Court Recorder sitting on the London and South Eastern Circuit.

Between 2004 and 2009, she was a Commissioner at the Independent Police Complaints Commission, with particular responsibility for Kent, Sussex, the Ministry of Defence Police and part of the Metropolitan Police. Prior to this, she was a board member at the Police Complaints Authority from 2001 to 2004.

Between 1985 and 2001, Nicola was a barrister in private practice, practicing in a number of fields before the High Court, Crown Court and Court of Appeal, and specialising in Criminal Law, including three successful Commonwealth death penalty appeals before the House of Lords sitting as the Privy Council.

Nicola is a founder member of the Independent Advisory Group to the Metropolitan Police Service (following recommendations arising from the Stephen Lawrence Report in 1999).

In addition to being actively engaged as a mentor for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds, Nicola is also a published author.

Matthew Vickers

Matthew VickersMatthew Vickers joined Ombudsman Services, which operates the Energy Ombudsman scheme, in 2015 and became chief executive in late 2018.

His leadership role involves developing and implementing long-term strategy and maintaining positive relationships with regulators, government departments, politicians, consumer advocacy groups and other key external stakeholders. He is passionate about the role of an ombudsman in delivering better outcomes for consumers and businesses alike.

Prior to joining Ombudsman Services in 2015, Matthew was chief executive at the Scottish Legal Complaints Commission (SLCC), a non-departmental public body based in Edinburgh. A fluent Spanish speaker, he spent four years with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office as British Consul, initially in the Canary Islands and then in Madrid. Before entering public service, Matthew’s background was in retail and FMCG. Matthew lives in Wirral, Merseyside. Outside work he enjoys spending time with his wife and two children.

skip to top

Representing Complaint Handler and Associate Members

Helen Megarry

Helen MegarryHelen was appointed as the Independent Adjudicator from April 2016. She adjudicates on complaints made about HM Revenue and Customs, and the Valuation Office Agency. A solicitor by profession, Helen has a wealth of experience in the ombudsman role having spent 18 years with the Housing Ombudsman Service, most recently as Deputy Housing Ombudsman.

Rónán Ó Domhnaill

Rónán Ó DomhnaillRónán Ó Domhnaill was appointed Language Commissioner on 12 March 2014. He was appointed by the President of Ireland following his nomination by the Government. Both Houses of the Oireachtas, (Dáil Éireann and Seanad Éireann) unanimously accepted that nomination.
Rónán spent 16 years as a journalist with the national broadcaster in Ireland, RTÉ and with TG4. He was appointed as Political Correspondent with Nuacht RTÉ/TG4 in 2006. He also, on occasion, presented political programmes such as The Week in Politics.

The Language Commissioner reports directly to the Houses of the Oireachtas. Rónán is often before Oireachtas committees to speak about language rights and the need to protect and strengthen those rights. 
The Office of An Coimisinéara Teanga is an independent statutory office whose responsibility is to monitor the manner in which the State’s public bodies comply with the provisions of the Official Languages Act 2003.
The Office investigates complaints from the public in cases where it is believed that public bodies may have failed to fulfil their obligations under the Official Languages Act. The Office also enquires into any valid complaints regarding allegations that a provision of any other enactment relating to the status or use of Irish has been contravened.

The Office also provides advice to the public about their language rights and to public bodies about their language obligations under the Act.

skip to top

Antony Townsend

Antony TownsendAntony was has been the UK Financial Regulators Complaints Commissioner since 1 May 2014, considering complaints against the Financial Conduct Authority and the Bank of England. He is Chair of the UK and Ireland Regulatory Board of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, Chair of the Regulatory Board of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants, a member of the Board of the Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care, and a Trustee of South Warwickshire Citizens Advice.

Antony was the first Chief Executive of the Solicitors Regulation Authority from its establishment in 2006 until January 2014. In that role, he led major reforms in the regulation of solicitors and law firms, including the introduction of a risk-based approach to regulation, and greater competition in the legal services market. He was the General Dental Council’s chief executive from 2001-2006, where he led a large reform programme to modernise dental regulation, involving legislative, structural and operational change, and including the extension of regulation to new groups of dental professionals. In the 1990s, Antony held a number of senior roles at the General Medical Council, including Director of Standards and Education, and Head of Conduct.

His earlier career was with the Home Office, where he worked primarily on criminal justice issues.

Director - Donal Galligan

Donal GalliganDonal was appointed Director of the Ombudsman Association in February 2016, after joining the Association on an interim basis in June 2014. Donal has extensive experience of external relations having worked in various Private Office and policy roles in the UK. He helped set up the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority whilst at the UK Department of Trade and Industry and ran the Board Secretariat at the South East England Development Agency. In 2008 he joined the UK Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO), where he spent 5 years. At PHSO he set up and headed the Policy Team, where he led on international relations, influenced government policy and secured legislative changes.

Donal also sits on the steering group of the UK Administrative Justice Council and is a member of the British Standards Institute’s Consumer and Public Interest Strategic Advisory Committee.

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